Just Electric

Cassidy denies Vandoorne New York pole by 0.008s

Nick Cassidy takes pole in New York by just 0.008s from Stoffel Vandoorne.

The Envision driver managed a time of 1.08.980s, the fastest time of qualifying, in the final duel to take his first pole position of the season.

It was mixed conditions in qualifying, which caught out a number of drivers in the second group, when rain came early in the session. Only two drivers, Lucas Di Grassi and Alexander Sims, were able to set their times in dry conditions, and a number of title contenders were knocked out of the session.

There was already upset in the championship fight when points leader Edoardo Mortara failed to make it through from the first group, missing out by just 0.008s to Nissan’s Sebastien Buemi.

It meant Stoffel Vandoorne was the only driver in the top four in the championship to make it through to the duel stages, and he lines up second on the grid for the first of two New York E-Prix.

Mortara wasn’t the only upset to come from Group A. Dragon’s Sergio Sette Camara hit the wall on the first lap, bringing out the red flag. It made things tight for the remaining drivers trying to set their first time before the six minute mark.

Andre Lotterer, who was disqualified from the Marrakesh qualifying for not setting a lap within the first six minutes, crossed the start finish line just as the clock ticked past the six minute mark.

The race to set the second laps was just as tight, with both Lotterer and Oliver Askew taking the chequered flag before they completed their final push lap. It left them ninth and 10th in the group, with Lotterer ahead of Askew.

Robin Frijns led an Envision 1-2, with Cassidy, Vandoorne and Buemi also making it through to the finals.

In Group B, Di Grassi and Sims were the only drivers who didn’t complete a preperation lap, allowing them to set their push lap before a brief rain shower came. Sam Bird and Pascal Wehrlein also made it through with times 1.5s off Di grassi’s lap.

The rain stopped after the group stages, meaning the drivers through to the duels were left with an ever-improving track.

Cassidy beat Bird in the quarter finals after a mistake for Bird at the first corner. He then went head to head with Wehrlein, beating the Porsche driver by 0.148s.

Vandoorne’s journey through the duels started with a head to head with Sims, who he beat by 0.120s, then Lucas Di Grassi, who was just 0.044s slower than Vandoorne.

Di Grassi lines up third on the grid ahead of Wehrlein and Buemi, who the Venturi driver faced in the quarter finals. The Di Grassi-Buemi head-to-head, being the last in the quarter finals, was the fastest of the four.

Sims takes sixth ahead of Frijns and Bird.

Championship leader Mortara starts ninth ahead of Antonio Felix Da Costa and Nyck de Vries. Jean-Eric Vergne and Mitch Evans, second and fourth in the championship standings, start 16th and 14th respectively.

Bethonie Waring

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